Selected story summaries by billborre []
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The Cthulhu Mythos Megapack

by Clark Ashton Smith; John Gregory Betancourt; Overdrive Inc.

  eBook : Document

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Selected story summaries   (2019-12-10)


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by billborre

"The Salem Horror" by Henry Kuttner - Carson is staying in a house where a witch named Abbie Prinn had lived three centuries before and constructed a Witch Room. Carson discovers the Witch Room and tells his landlord he wants to move his writing desk inside and the landlord mentions it to other people leading Carson to receive a visit from Leigh who is an occultist. Leigh asks Carson about his dreams but Carson is skeptical about any supernatural doings. When Abbie's mummified body is disinterred from the cemetery Leigh tells Carson that Abbie has hypnotized him into being her servant. Carson denies this but has a strange dream about a black blob devouring the people of Salem and Leigh begs Carson to stay out of the Witch Room until he can return with a rare elixir. When Carson is alone in the house he is terrified to discover the animated mummy of Abbie Prinn. Carson is held in a paralyzing grasp while Abbie makes her way into the Witch Room and begins an incantation which will raise the iron slab in the floor and release the elder god she serves. Leigh rushes past Carson and tosses his elixir onto the black mass which retreats taking Abbie with it while the iron slab crashes down. The last thing Carson sees as he flees the Witch Room is Abbie's withered claw-like hand thrust up from below the iron slab as though in salute.

"Something in the Moonlight" by Lin Carter - Curtis attempts to help his patient Horby in the insane asylum deal with his fear of an Old One which dwells in an unknown lunar area. Horby had stumbled over the cult which worships the entity leading to the diagnosis of paranoid delusion that landed him in the asylum. Since the copy of the Necronomicon Horby's father possessed was incomplete Horby doesn't know the name or location of the entity he fears and begs Curtis to humor him and acquire the information. Curtis is able to get the entity's name and location from the Miskatonic's Necronomicon but the chant Horby needs to defend himself is illegible in the library's copy. When Curtis informs Horby of this all hope drains from him and he resigns himself to his doom. A horrible creature rises from the swamp out back during the night and kills Horby with a male nurse the sole witness to the attack. Curtis adopts Horby's aversion to moonlight.

"The Faceless God" by Robert Bloch - Doctor Stugatche overhears merchants who have discovered the head of an idol buried in the Egyptian desert two hundred miles from the nearest village. He thinks the idol may be valuable to him so he assembles a group of native workmen to excavate the idol, transport it by cart, then bring it up river. After torturing its location from one the merchants the expedition arrives at the site and to the horror of the natives the unearthed idol represents Nyarlathotep, Lord of the Desert. Stugatche threatens to shoot them if they don't do what he says but finds when wakes during the night that they have absconded with the supplies and left him to die, even reburying the idol. Stugatche starts out across the desert and dreams the shadow of Nyarlathotep pursues him to punish him for his desecration. He ends up going in a circle and confronts the faceless idol once more before he dies.

"Toadface" by Mark McLaughlin - John and Meg are having lunch in a coffeehouse when an ugly man that they nickname Toadface overhears them discussing a protein diet and sits at their table. Toadface is curious as to which meat is best to consume and both John and Meg consider him a creep and make their excuses to leave. Toadface sees that John works in Innsmouth due to his employee badge. That night John finds himself dreaming he is in a grotto beneath the waves with Toadface and wants to wake up but Toadface tells him that his body is dead and Toadface has drawn his soul into the grotto to remain forever. John enters into the sleeping body of an Old One and captures Toadface. He returns to the surface and pushes Toadface into the wet cement at his construction site and then heads out into the sea to devour a whale.

"The Return of the Sorcerer" by Clark Ashton Smith - John Carnby hires the narrator to translate a passage from the Arabic version of the Necronomicon. Ten days ago John murdered and dismembered his twin brother Helman because he was jealous of Helman's progress in the study of the dark arts. Helman told John that dismembering his corpse would do no good as his strength of will was sufficient to reassemble the dead pieces and both the narrator and John hear the body parts moving about in the hall but John attempts to pass the sounds off as rats. After the translated passage fails to disperse the malevolent presence within the house John admits his crime to the narrator and the narrator resolves to abandon John to his fate and flee the house, but not before he is made to witness Helman's vengeance upon his brother.

"Dagon and Jill" by John P. McCann - Ezra Whately of Dunwich MA attempts to market three children's books, Dagon and Jill, The Shadow over Humpty Dumpty, and The Children's Necronomicon, to the Los Angeles Unified School District's alternative faiths program. Since the books include human sacrifice the legal department has some qualms but are bought off by Ezra's gold. Ezra's contact at the program gushes over how well the books are being received telling him that "The Children's Necronomicon could be bigger than Twilight!"

"The Spawn of Dagon" by Henry Kuttner - Elak is hired by Gesti to assassinate Zend the Wizard of Atlantis but Gesti betrays Elak after Elak disables the wizard's defensive jewel. Gesti is revealed as belonging to a group that worship Dagon with the goal of sinking Atlantis. Gesti binds Zend and Elak as he wants to use their human blood as a sacrifice. Elak's friend Lycon uses his weapon to cut free Zend and Elak, and while Zend repairs his jewel whose rays will kill the Dagon worshipers, Elak and Lycon flee the palace.

"Those of the Air" by Darrell Schweitzer and Jason Van Hollander - This story is the tale of two brothers inspired by the events of "The Dunwich Horror."

"Ubbo-Sathla" by Clark Ashton Smith - Paul buys a crystal from a curio shop which puts him in mental contact with a long dead sorcerer.




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